The Right Reverend John Thomas Walker

Bishop John Walker, the first African American Bishop of the Episcopal Diocese of Washington, left a powerful legacy within the Diocese, the Episcopal Church in America, and certainly at the School that bears his name. Bishop Walker was a teacher, pastor, builder, urban missionary, relief worker, statesman, civil rights leader, and pioneer in social justice. He was particularly prominent in the fight against South African apartheid and became close to The Most Reverend Desmond M. Tutu, who is the Honorary Chair of the School’s Advisory Committee. At the core of his life and ministry was the belief that education was the door to opportunity. He was the first African American seminarian at Virginia Theological Seminary and also the first African American teacher at St. Paul’s School in Concord, New Hampshire, where he ministered to the children of the world’s elite as well as to children who might have been most easily forgotten. As an Episcopal priest, he dedicated himself to assuring that future generations of African American children would find the doors of every educational institution open to them. In its mission and core values, The Bishop John T. Walker School mirrors this vision that Bishop Walker had for the future of the world’s children.

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